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Hi I'm Jake

I'm a Mormon.

About Me

My name is Jake, and I'm a recent college graduate with a love of cooking, furniture restoration, and trying new things. I'm one of those people that makes goal lists a mile long and then tries to do them all at once...you know how that works out. By day I'm a financial adviser, by night I'm a family man with a wonderful wife and an energetic son. When I'm not spending time laughing and playing with them, you can usually find me reading a book, trying in vain to get in shape, or sanding down an old piece of furniture. I remember my grandma once said (when speaking about somebody else), "He hasn't figured out that the world doesn't love him." Ever since then, that's how I've wanted to be. I think you can do anything if you set your mind to it and the main reason why people fail is that they give up too early. I love my Heavenly Father and my wife and family, and I love that we can always choose to be happy. And I'm a Mormon:)

Why I am a Mormon

I've been a Mormon my entire life, and I honestly can't imagine being anything else. At first glance I'm the typical Mormon guy, I went on a two-year mission, I attended BYU, I was married in the Portland, Oregon Temple, and at 26 I have a son; however, I did not receive a testimony of the truthfulness of the restored Gospel of Jesus Christ until late in my senior year of high school. I was like many seniors, preoccupied with girls, sports and studying and not much time for anything else. When I realized that I was quickly approaching the age to go on a mission I decided I should read the Book of Mormon. I didn't fully understand what was happening at the time, but through reading that book and praying to God, I grew happier than I had ever been. When I finished reading it, I followed it's advice and asked my Heavenly Father if it was true. I remember feeling strongly in my heart, a witness from the Holy Ghost, that it did indeed contain the word of God and that because it is true, the Gospel really was restored through the Prophet Joseph Smith. Many years, and a few thousand miles later, my testimony has only grown stronger. Now, I'm a Mormon because there is a living Prophet on earth today to whom God speaks. We are entitled and the church is run through revelation. We don't have to rely solely on God's counsel thousands of years ago, we can get tailor-made direction for our problems in todays vastly different world. I'm a Mormon because with the restoration of the Gospel came the restoration of God's power on earth to seal families together forever. I want to be with my wife and kids for eternity, not just this lifetime. Finally, I'm a Mormon because I believe in Jesus Christ and his redeeming Atonement. I am forever grateful to him for taking my sins upon himself. As I said, I can't imagine being anything but a Mormon because it is the best thing in the world.

How I live my faith

I am a Webelos Scout Leader. Now, that may not sound like a church related activity, but in our faith, scouts is a big deal. We teach kids how to be self-reliant, leaders, and community minded. We also try to instill a strong and lasting faith in God that will sustain them throughout the rest of their life. With many competing influences in the world, the lessons learned in scouting can act as a compass for growing young men. Obviously though, I don't spend all of my time in scouts. I live my faith on a day to day basis by doing the basics; reading my scriptures, saying my prayers, fasting at times, giving meals to those in need, and attending church every Sunday. My wife and I agree with the teaching in the book of Mormon, "When ye are in the service of your fellow beings, ye are only in the service of your God." We enjoy giving to those in need and have sponsored our own clothing drive for poor children. Perhaps the most important way that we live our faith is in our family. On Mondays we have what is called "Family Home Evening." This is a time where we can teach our son about Jesus Christ and the Gospel and where we can play together. Since we believe that the family is an eternal unit, building our family in this way is very important. I believe that it doesn't take large shows of faith to be a faithful member of the church, instead, we should live our faith on a day to day basis. By doing this we can always remain on the right path.

What do Mormons believe about the Bible? Do they regard it as Holy Scripture and the word of God?

We believe the Bible to be the word of God. In fact, that is one of the basic principles of our Church. One of our, "Articles of Faith," states, "We believe the Bible to be the word of God as far as it is translated correctly. We also believe the Book of Mormon to be the word of God." The Book of Mormon was never meant to take away from the Bible. We believe that used together the two compliment each other and clarify God's teachings. I love the Bible, both the Old and New Testaments. Reading of the Savior's life and ministry as well as that of his Apostles and Prophets is an amazing experience. I believe that by reading and following its teachings you will come closer to God and understand the great love he has for you. Show more Show less

How do I become a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (Mormon Church)?

Great questions, I'm glad you asked. We encourage everybody to learn about the restored Gospel and find out for themselves if it is true. There are many ways to learn about the church. First you should meet with the missionaries. They are young men and women that have devoted two years of their lives to preaching about our Savior. They will meet with you, answer any questions you have, as wel as provide a series of discussions that thoroughly explain what we believe. You should also read and pray about the Book of Mormon. It is the cornerstone to everything we believe in and I know that if you sincerely ask God if it is true he will answer you personally. By asking God if it is true then you don't have to depend on the beliefs of anybody else, you will know for certain. This is how I found my testimony and how everybody has, through their own personal prayers and experiences. Once you know that what you have learned is true and you are ready to follow the commandments of God then you can be baptized by immersion by one holding the Priesthood authority of God. After being baptized you will then receive the gift of he Holy Ghost, and he will be a constant companion to you throughout your life as you choose to stay close to the Savior and his teachings. Becoming a member of the church is easy, what you need to do first is find out for yourself if it is true. Show more Show less

To what do you attribute the growth of the Church?

We want to share it with others. The things I love are the things I want to share with others and I love the Church. I love how it gives purpose to life, how it helps my family grow together, how it provides friends and a wonderful support structure. I love the Book of Mormon and that God actually leads his church today. In a world with such unstable values and beliefs I love knowing that there is a sure foundation that I can turn to. It has taught me that I am a child of God and that my family can be together forever. I know what I need to do to return to life with my Heavenly Father. I know what I need to do to be happy. And what's even better is that after following the teachings found in the church I know that they workd. These are the reasons we all share the Gospel with others and these are the reasons that people choose to learn about the church. People have questions and we do have the answers. Show more Show less

What is faith?

There is so much confusion in the world as to the nature of faith. Some believe faith is solely believing in Jesus Christ as our Savior and that by believing we will be saved. Others believe that faith without works is dead and that it is our actions that allow us to return to our Father in Heaven. As a Latter-day Saint, I believe in both of these views combined. Faith is a principle of action but it is based upon a firm belief in Christ as our Savior and Redeemer. Faith is to believe in something even though you have never seen it. You have an active hope that it is true. To say you believe in Christ and not follow his principles would; however, be hyporcritical. He did not teach us the commandments for nothing. Faith and action are as inseperable as God and love. By believing in Chris we follow his teachings, we strive to be like him, to lift up others and follow his commandments. We listen and adhere to his words and the words of his prophets. But while we do all we can do follow Christ, we understand that it is only through him that we can be saved. Faith is a principle of action and a principle of humility. We act on what God tells us to do and trust that through him we can be forgiven of our sins and return to live with him someday. Show more Show less

Can you tell me about Mormon customs: how you dress for church, what holidays you celebrate, etc.?

We love to celebrate. In fact, I can't remember the last time I went to a church outing - besides church on Sunday - where food wasn't involved. It's just how it goes. For some reason we're known for green jello but I want to make it clear that I've never had it. We celebrate most every holiday that your average person would celebrate: Christmas, Easter, Birthdays, Halloween, National Hamburger Day:), etc. We even have some holidays unique to our church like Pioneer Day which celebrates the Mormon pioneers and their sacrifces as they migrated to Utah. Another tradition we have is how we dress on Sunday and throughout the week. On Sundays we always dress up for church. Men generally wear a white shirt and tie and either slacks or a suit. Women either wear a dress or a skirt and blouse. We try to look our best. During the week we don't dress like this; however, we do always strive to dress modestly. Show more Show less

What is the Law of Chastity?

The Law of Chastity allows us to better understand how sacred of an experience it is to bring a life into this world. There are few other ways that we can be closer to our creator than by creating a life here on earth. Because he has given us this power, he expects us to cherish it and not abuse it. Our bodies are sacred and so is life. We belive that sexual relations should only be between a man and women who are legally married. We do not enter into these relations outside of marriage, nor do we seek to arouse the passions that come with these actions. We also believe in being completly devoted to our spouse in our thoughts and actions. Keeping the Law of Chastity has brought so much happiness to my life. I have a loving wife and a wonderful son. We trust each other and my wife knows that I respect her. In fact, as a man I feel that keeping the Law of Chastity has been a great help to me in respecting women. I see them as daughters of our Heavenly Father and not a sex symbol as the world promote them. I know that this principle helps maintain loving, healthy, and happy marriages and brings so much joy and peace to those who follow it. Show more Show less

Why are only some Mormons allowed into temples? Is there something secret going on in Mormon Temples? What goes on in Mormon Temples?

The blessings received from Temple ordinances are among the most sacred and cherished that we can obtain in this life. For this purpose, there are certain requirements to enter into the Temple, and anybody who chooses to meet those requirements is able to attend. Essentially you need to be keeping the commandments and have a testimony. Each Temple goer has a recommend card that they received by having an interview with a leader in the church. The leader asks simple questions like if you believe that Jesus Christ is your savior, or are you honest in your dealings with your fellow men. After attesting to your personal worthiness to enter the Temple the leader signs your recommend and you can enter whenever you wish. We strivfe to be worthy to enter the Temple because of the blessings it offers. Inside the Temple we participate in ordinances that allow our families to be together forever, including husband and wives as well as children. We also provide these ordiances for those who died without the opportunity to do so. We learn so much there about God and his plan for his children and the entire experience is very sacred to us. Because of the sacred nature of the ordinances provided, we tend not to discuss them in depth which may lead others to believe something secret is happening but that is not the case. We cherish so much the blessings we receive and truly want others to be able to come to the temple with us. Show more Show less

What is done with the tithing that Mormons pay?

The church acually has a list of things that they use tithing for: - Constructing temples, chapels, and other buildings. - Providing operating funds for the Church. - Funding the missionary program (This does not include individual missionary expenses.) - Preparing materials used in Church classes and organizations. - Temple work, family history, and many other important Church functions. - Education. One thing I love about being LDS is that none of us are payed to do what we do. Our leaders and teachers are all volunteers. The tithing money that we give is used to fund the list above. We give one tenth of our income to our Heavenly Father in the form of tithing and if you think about it, that is a pretty small percentage given everything that he has provided for us. Show more Show less

Why is The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints called Mormons or Mormonism?

It's really just a nickname. We believe in the Book of Mormon which is another witness of Jesus Christ and because this is such a distinguishing part of our faith people started calling us mormons. Our church's real name is The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and we often go by Latter-day Saints or LDS (the initials). We prefer that people use the real name of the church because it illustrates our firm belief in Jesus Chrst as our Savior and reduces confusion for those that have never heard of the church. Show more Show less

How can we come to know our Father in Heaven?

It's funny that a lot of the things that we learn as children are always the right answers. If we want to know Heavenly Father then we need to talk to him through prayer, read about him in the scriptures, and keep his commandments. I was taught that when I was a little kid and it still rings true today. Our Heavenly Father definitely loves us, and like any Father he wants to talk to us. I pray every morning and night by myself and with my family and I know that God listens to us. He doesn't always answer rigt away, but he does answer. I love to pray because I know that no matter how I am feeling, my Heavenly Father will always listen and understand me. We've been given so many witnesses that God is real: the Bible, Book of Mormon, Pearl of Great Price, Doctrine and Covenents, and the words of modern day Prophets and Apostles. If you just look you'l be able to find something to strengthen your testimony that God lives. Finally, if we really want to know that God is real and that he truly cares for us then we need to follow his teachings. I know that he loves me because everything he has ever commanded me to do has brought me happiness by following it. Show more Show less

How can I find someone to talk with, in person, about the Mormon religion?

There are so many ways. If you know a Mormon then just ask them questions. If you don't know a member of the church then you can use this website to chat with a missionary and request somebody to come speak with you. You can also call 1-888-537-6600 if you are in the US or Canada. You can even check this website to find out where the nearest church is to you and what time they meet for church on Sunday. Show more Show less

What is the priesthood?

The priesthood is the authority to act in God's name. We believe that God allows man to use this power to serve others and it comes with great responsibility. When I got the priesthood it was explained to me that when I use it I am acting for God and that I should always live in a way that would allow me to be worthy of that responsibility. Because I have it I feel a great desire to help others. Priesthood holders lead the church, perform ordiances like baptism, and bless the sick. We believe that Jesus Christ gave this power to the ancient Apostles like Peter, James, and John. We believe this same power has been brought back today and that the church is lead by our Heavenly Father once again, just like it was when Jesus Christ was alive. Show more Show less